March 26, 2020
for Sunday, March 29
God is good—even in the middle of a pandemic or in the middle of the death of a dear friend. However, we may wonder where God could possibly be at a time like this. It’s exhausting, isn’t it?
Let’s go back to the beginning of the gospel reading, “… though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, 6after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was” (vv. 5-6). What!?! He stayed where he was longer instead of running to Bethany to heal his friend. Unbelievable. His disciples must have seen him as harsh or a little bit crazy. Why wouldn’t he help this family that he loves so much?
In the verses in between those above, both Mary and Martha say the same thing to Jesus when they first see Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died” (vv. 21, 32). They knew that Jesus could have healed their brother, but he was very dead—4 days worth of death and Lazarus stunk! There was no doubt about how dead he was, so the sisters had lost hope of any miracle.
But Jesus waited two whole days before taking this trip. He did this so all could see the raising of Lazarus. And what was the result? “Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him” (v. 45). God knew what was going on even though Jesus’ disciples didn’t and Mary and Martha didn’t.
We likely wonder where God is in the midst of the Coronavirus. Our lives have been completely upended. My surgery has been postponed until things settle down. Our stock market has tanked, although it has rebounded somewhat. We have friends and neighbors that have lost their jobs and have no income.
We and our friends, family and neighbors are like Lazarus. Christ calls us to life, to come out of the grave and live. There’s a song by Passion that expresses that. Here is the link to it:
1Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. 3So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, “Lord, he whom you love is ill.” 4But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.” 5Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, 6after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.
7Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.” 8The disciples said to him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?” 9Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. 10But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them.” 11After saying this, he told them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.” 12The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.” 13Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. 14Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. 15For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” …
38Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days.” 40Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” 41So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upward and said, “Father, I thank you for having heard me. 42I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.” 43When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”
45Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.
Names will remain of the Prayer List for a month - at which
time it will be taken off unless, or course, there is still a continued need
for our prayers and we’re asked to keep the name on.
All services and activities cancelled until the end April.
Follow the link below each Sunday at 9:30 to Worship in Spirit
St. Timothy Updates due to Coronavirus Pandemic. Heres the link:
***We continuously collect food items for the 5 & 2 Ministry. Bring your donations and place in the black bin in church narthex. Lists detailing items needed are also available in the narthex. Monetary donations welcome! Contact Gale-Svenson-Campbell for details
***5 & 2 Ministry Food Bins Donated to Date: 76
***ONLINE GIVING now available at St. Timothy for Debit/Credit cards. 3 ways to give:
- Go directly to our website at
- Use our QR code with the QR reader on your smartphone
- Download the app ‘GivePlus Church’. Create an account.
For further information, contact Kathy Carlson at 485-1316.
Dear St. Timothy family,
Greetings. Even though we are not physically meeting together, there is still church--everywhere, because we are the church. However, during our time apart, we easily forget about the church's day to day operating expenses. Without the reminder of our offerings in worship, the envelopes remain in a drawer.
I would urge you to remember that we still have expenses even if we are not meeting together physically. You can drop your offering in the mail to: . You can also give electronically online at .
Go to the right-hand side of the screen to "Donate Online." There you will have options for giving for the regular offering, Disaster Relief, 5 and 2 and other ministries. There is also a QR code in the e-ministry that can be scanned.
Thank you all for your continued generosity. Take care and God bless.
Pastor Ivy Gauvin
St. Timothy Lutheran Church, Bemus Point, NY
3 John 21:9-12 "When the disciples stepped ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there with fish on it and some bread. Then Jesus said to them, 'Come and eat.'"
Some of the most communal times at camp are mealtimes. As the camp community takes a break from the activities of the day, it gathers around the table to share "fish and bread" and conversation. Along with the table necessities of salt, pepper, napkins, and yes - hand sanitizer, is the equally important Conversation Card.
This little card has a set of questions for every meal of the week. After a sung, then spoken prayer, each person at the table takes a turn answering the questions. The conversation that ensues can and usually goes all over the place.
If conversation in your home is focused primarily on the unknowns of the Coronavirus, try some of the following Conversation Card questions. May the conversation that ensues, go places that are funny, light, and enjoyable. God be with you!
1. If you could add one person to Mt. Rushmore, who would it be?
2. When they ship Styrofoam, what do they pack it in?
3. If you had a time machine, where would you go?
4. What historical person would you want to have lunch with?
5. If you could un-invent one thing, what would it be?
6. Can you cry underwater?
7. If you could be any creature, what would you be and why?
In light of COVID-19 and its increasing spread in our area, our Conference Leadership Team has decided to cancel the Conference Women’s Spring Gathering, scheduled for Saturday, April 25th. We plan to have it at a later date.
Please continue caring for one another through prayer and support (however that is manifested). We are all in this together.
God bless and thank you for your understanding,
Lois Rumfelt, Secretary
Upstate New York Synod, Women of the ELCA
Even in the midst of all the craziness of this pandemic,
new life begins. Sarah Goebel is overjoyed to share the
birth of her new grandson. Please welcome Liam
Christopher Goebel, son of Steven and Jessica Goebel.
He made his entry on March 21, 2020, weighing in at
7 lbs 2 oz and 19 inches long.
· For our community of faith as we seek to do God’s work in the world.
· For those in our congregation and community who suffer silently with illness, financial burdens, and family obligation.
· For victims of violence and their families in all places.
· For victims of wildfires, flooding and earthquakes.
· For: Avis West, Lori Erickson, John Gingrass, David Johnson, Shirley Meyers, Ron Simpson, Dan Kelly, Inara Ledder, Dick Starks, Grace Alessi, Tim O’Brien, Gretta Kettle, George and Janet Balcom, Maj-Britt Traynor, Pat & Maureen Kibbe, Beverly Klang, Trudy Fetzner, Thom Shagla, Matt Isaacson, Sarah Van Staalduinen, Mabel Tranum, Bryan Brown, , Jim Doherty, Karen Brown, and Bonnie Christoferson.
· For people serving in the military, including Ben Wickerham and Jeffrey Clauson, and their families, those caught up in persecution, violence and war.
· For all children, that the love of Christ may reach them through all of us who have resources to love, protect, pray and provide for them.
· For: The ELCZ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe and ELCZa Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zambia.